US envoy to meet McBride family on Aegis

The Pat Finucane Centre have issued this press release today:

US Special Envoy agrees to discuss Iraq contract with Mc Bride family

Private security firm tries to gag whistle-blower over Iraq shootings

As controversial British private security/ mercenary firm Aegis Defence Services prepares to take legal action to gag a whistle blower the US Special Envoy to the North has agreed to meet the Mc Bride family to discuss the role of Tim Spicer in the company. Spicer, former gun-runner and mercenary, was the commanding officer in 1992 in Belfast when soldiers under his command murdered Peter Mc Bride. Though convicted of murder the soldiers remain the British army. Spicer has repeadedly lied about the circumstances surrounding the murder and has sought to justify the incident where Scots Guards opened fire on a youth they knew to be unarmed. On leaving the military Spicer was involved in mercenary activities and attempted coups in Africa and Asia and the Pentagon decision to award his company a $293 million contract in Iraq has been widely opposed in the US and elsewhere. When allegations surfaced recently that Aegis employees were involved in the murder of civilians in Iraq, incidents caught on so-called trophy videos, Jean Mc Bride again called on the US authorities to cancel the contract, a call echoed by a number of US Senators and members of congress.

Speaking today Jean Mc Bride said,   

"The last thing the poor people of Iraq need is a man who tries to justify the murder of unarmed civilians which he has done in Peter’s case. Isn’t it about time that someone told the US public where their tax dollars are going?  This is one foreign fighter that the Iraqis should definitely expel. That is what I intend telling Mitchell Reiss when I meet him in May. "

(PFC note-the US Special Envoy to the North, Mitchell Reiss, informed the PFC this week that he is willing to meet the Mc Bride family to discuss their concerns at Spicer’s role in Iraq. Meanwhile it has also emerged that Aegis employed a former British soldier who had been dismissed from the armed forces for theft. The former soldier, who worked for Aegis in Iraq, had a reputation as a brutal and sadistic instructor at the controversial British Army Deepcut barracks in England. A number of young recruits died in mysterious circumstances at the base where bullying was widespread. The families of the recruits who died at Deepcut have called for an Inquiry and have voiced support for the Mc Bride family in Belfast in their efforts to have human rights abusers automatically dismissed from the British armed forces. The sting in the tail is of course that this violent insrtuctor was dismissed following his conviction for theft while Guardsmen James Fisher and Mark Wright, who murdered Peter Mc Bride, remain serving soldiers.    

More 4 Press Release

More 4 TV News has learned that the British private security company Aegis is to go to court tomorrow (Friday April 7) in an attempt to gag a former employee whose
website contains videos showing security guards from the company allegedly firing indiscriminately at Iraqis without giving adequate warnings.

We can also reveal for the first time the man behind, the site where the videos appear: He is Rod Stoner, a former British Army
officer and Aegis employee who worked for the company between 2004 and 2005.

Tomorrow Aegis is seeking a high court injunction against Mr Stoner asking that Mr Stoner cease operating the website and that he be prohibited from speaking to the press or disseminating in any way the company’s rules of engagement and any other information the company believes to be confidential.

Tonight Mr Stoner tells Channel 4 News "They’re accusing me of breach of confidence, breach of contract and copyright infringement .. I can’t understand how they can do that because as soon as the videos were out they denied they were anything to do with them. My original intention of building the website was to draw out the problems
so that Aegis had no choice but to put it right. Of the videos Mr Stoner says: "Most of the clips that were shot, I was in the vehicle."

Aegis has told More 4 News that its own inquiry – announced when the videos emerged last November – is now complete and has been submitted to the US authorities. But the firm is still not able to confirm that its employees were involved in the incidents shown in the videos.







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